Sunday, June 21, 2009

The Importuning Woman part II

I read 1 Nephi 17:51 where it talks about Nephi building the ship. His brothers are, of course, making fun of him and mocking him for thinking he can build a boat. If we think about it, Nephi probably didn't know anything about building boats. He may have never seen a boat before. Below are the verses and some thoughts:

50 And I said unto them: aIf God had commanded me to do all things I could do them. If he should command me that I should say unto this water, be thou earth, it should be earth; and if I should say it, it would be done.
51 And now, if the Lord has such great power, and has wrought so many miracles among the children of men, how is it that he cannot ainstruct me, that I should build a ship?

I know we have all read this scripture before and probably have thought about the truthfulness that God can help us in anything we do. One thought on verse 51 -- if Heavenly Father can help Nephi "build a ship," can't He help Brandon (my brother) "find a job," or help Kelsey and I "do well in school." Can't He instruct us in how we should be "living our lives?" Yes. He absolutely can. He has wrought so many miracles and will continue to do it with us.

So, I continued to read in 1 Nephi 18 verses 1-3. As I read this, I went back and also read Brandon's discourse on the Importuning Woman. If you need to, go back and read that then read these three verses. Pretty interesting.

1 And it came to pass that they did aworship the Lord, and did go forth with me; and we did work timbers of curious bworkmanship. And the Lord did show me from time to time after what manner I should work the timbers of the cship.
2 Now I, Nephi, did not work the timbers after the manner which was learned by men, neither did I build the ship after the manner of men; but I did build it after the manner which the Lord had shown unto me; wherefore, it was not after the manner of men.
3 And I, Nephi, did go into the mount oft, and I did apray oft unto the Lord; wherefore the Lord bshowed unto me cgreat things.

In verse 1, it says that as Nephi and his family worshipped the Lord, they were able to start to create this boat. "Timbers of curious workmanship" or art, as the footnote says. And the LORD, showed Nephi FROM TIME TO TIME how he should do those things. Okay, so the Lord is telling him how to do these things. Nephi wasn't building the ship (vs 2) according to man's assumption of how it should be built, rather he built it the way the Lord wanted it to be built and how the Lord showed him. The manner of the Lord was different from the manner of men. (vs 3) Nephi went into the mountains OFTEN where he prayed and there, the Lord showed him great things.

It makes sense in my head how this can connect to the importuning woman. I hope you can see it as well. Simply the fact that Nephi didn't quite know what he was doing, but he trusted the Lord and the Lord's purpose. He followed the Lord's instructions and timing and went to Him often in prayer to continue to learn and grow and change -- as do the "widows" when we go to the Lord over and over. We aren't changing His will, He is changing ours. We are changed as we trust the Lord and are willing to follow Him. That's why we have challenges and struggles -- to help us grow and change. Ether 12:27 states the same idea. He has given us weakness so that we will go to Him in those times of struggle and let ourselves be purified, fine-tuned, changed by the healing power of the Atonement. When we need something, WE are the ones that must align ourselves in order to obtain what He has in store for us.

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